Ending a show as complex and convoluted as Lost has been was never going to be easy, which is why it was a good thing a few years back when a firm end date was set, meaning that Season Six was definitely The Final Season. If it had soldiered on and then been cancelled without coming to a conclusion, that would have been infuriating (the lack of resolution at the end of Twin Peaks being the best example). But still, lots of people seem to have been enraged by how the writers decided to close things off.
As I’ve already said, it was never going to be easy to satisfactorily tie up all of the show’s many loose ends, and a lot of the GEORGE LUCAS RAPED MY CHILDHOOD-style online rants are by people who have spent the last six or seven years anally going over every last theory about polar bears, magic numbers, Dharma stations, smoke monsters or trying to work out what Lost was actually all about. Maybe they’d rather have had a finale where each mystery was conveniently solved in a nice, neat little package, but that was never likely, or necessary.
In my opinion, Lost answered enough of the big questions to leave some of them unanswered, and I personally don’t have to know the reason behind everything that happened, just like I don’t have to know why The Sopranos finale was a cut to black or whether Sil ever woke up from his coma. One of the many reasons that Ringu was better than its American remake The Ring was that it left so much mystery rather than trying to make it all make sense, so it forces the audience to think about it afterwards and use their imaginations to round things off themselves.
A lot of people seemed not to be happy with the schmaltzy nature of the quasi-religious ending, with most of the characters reunited in the afterlife, but Michael Giacchino‘s beautifully elegaic music ensured that all of the emotional reunions had a real impact, helped by the strong characterisations that had held the show together through its twists and turns. These characters had been fleshed out well enough for us to want them to get happy endings, so when that’s what happened, it didn’t ring false.
A couple of days after watching the Lost finale, I’m still running through it in my head, and I’m also very tempted to watch the whole series again from the start, which is about as much as you can ever expect from a final episode. Was Lost a classic TV show in the mould of The Wire or The Sopranos? No, it certainly wasn’t, but it was enjoyable from start to finish and the finale made the journey worthwhile, no matter how bumpy it was at times.